Malta in the News — Weekly Round-up for May 25, 2018

By Brian Cullingworth, Last updated May 25, 2018

MGA To Launch Consolidated Self Exclusion System For Remote Licensees

Follows successful implementation of same for land-based industry

The Malta Gaming Authority will launch a Unified Self-Exclusion System for its Remote Gaming licensees following the successful roll out of the same to the land-based sector.

Self-exclusion tools are already a requirement for MGA remote licensees, however, the unified system will link all licensees so that players who self-exclude with one operator cannot simply open an account with another operator.

Players will be provided the tools to self-exclude across all licensed gaming channels, whether land-based or remote.

“The protection of players is at the heart of the MGA’s regulatory agenda, and this project further underlines our resolve to ensure that players have the necessary tools to engage in gaming services responsibly,” Heathcliff Farrugia, chief executive officer of the MGA said.

“Over the years we have witnessed efforts from gaming operators to implement various responsible gaming measures, and thus we strongly believe that the unified self-exclusion system will be well received by the industry and consumers alike.”

In addition, the Authority will investigate the possibility of a voluntary subscription system for operators in other jurisdictions but said the implementation of such a system requires careful and considered analysis.

Italian Police Seize Over 20 Million Euros Associated With Malta Gambling Company

Centurionbet allegedly involved in organised crime relationship

Italian police have seized over Euro 20 million following investigations into an organised crime illegal gambling ring linked to Malta company Centurionbet, the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project reported this week.

Centurionbet has been accused by prosecutors of entering into a commercial relationship with a company controlled by Italian organised crime figures, and that it was aware of the illicit activities and rewards resulting from the expansion of its network of gaming halls in the Crotone area of Italy.

Francesco Martiradonna, the suspected owner of Centurionbet, has been arrested after a two year investigation but denies illegal activity and will fight the accusations in the Italian courts next month.

Following a series of related arrests, Centurionbet’s gaming sites were shut down, but prior to that hundreds of its betting shops operated in Italy, despite not having the required authorisation from the national regulator, investigators claim, alleging that in just two years the company generated over Euro 150 million in player deposits and made annual profits of Euro 5 million.

Licensed by the Malta Gaming Authority, Centurionbet could operate abroad but only as long as its local agencies simply provided access to the online platforms and did not carry out gambling transactions.

Brian Cullingworth

Infopowa news was a staple of Casinomeister’s news from 2000 until 2019. Brian Cullingworth was the main writer, contributor, and was one of the most knowledgeable persons I have ever known involved in the online casino industry.

We first met in January 2001 at the ICE in London where I observed him going booth to booth interviewing online casino, software, and licensing jurisdiction representatives. Brian was also heavily involved with our forum as “Jetset“, he was involved as an informal consultant to eCOGRA, the OPA, and was a player advocate who assisted countless aggrieved players with his connections to industry folks. He also published “Casino Cautions” via Infopowa news for quite a number of years. These can be found in our news archives.

His passing in February 2019 was a dark day for us. He will be forever missed.

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